Rick DiBernardo

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Rick DiBernardo
No. 56, 53
Position: Linebacker
Personal information
Born: (1964-06-12) June 12, 1964 (age 53)
Redondo Beach, California
Height: 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Weight: 230 lb (104 kg)
Career information
College: Notre Dame
Undrafted: 1986
Career history
Career NFL statistics as of 1987
Games played: 19
Games started: 3
Fumble recoveries: 2
Player stats at NFL.com
Player stats at PFR

Richard Anthony DiBernardo (born June 12, 1964) is a former American football linebacker who played for the St. Louis Cardinals and the Los Angeles Rams of the National Football League (NFL).[1]

Early life[edit]

DiBernardo was born on June 12, 1964, in Redondo Beach, California. He attended Edison High School, where he played football and basketball.[2] In his junior season, DiBernardo set an Edison basketball record with 17 field goals against Costa Mesa High School.[3]

As a senior, DiBernardo was named to the South team in the Orange County All-Star basketball game.[4] Edison football coach Bill Workman said DiBernardo "could start at every position on our team except quarterback and tailback and it would be very close at those positions".[2] Parade magazine named DiBernardo to their All-America team, where the magazine's editors selected the best high school football players in America to the honorary team.[5] USC, UCLA, Nebraska, Washington, and Notre Dame all tried to recruit DiBernardo to their football programs.[6] In the visit with Notre Dame, head coach Gerry Faust talked to him about the university's "unique" atmosphere, its high academic standards and the Irish tradition".[7] After he visited the university's campus, DiBernardo chose to attend Notre Dame.[8]

Collegiate career[edit]

DiBernardo graduated with majors in marketing .[6]

Professional career[edit]

DiBernardo was not selected by a team in the 1986 NFL Draft, where organizations choose athletes to play for their teams, but he later signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.[6] The Buccaneers traded him to the St. Louis Cardinals for a twelfth-round draft pick in the following year's draft.[9] With the Cardinals, DiBernardo played as a reserve linebacker and as a long snapper on special teams.[6] He played in all 16 games that season, as the Cardinals finished with a 4–11–1 record.[1][10] After his first season in the NFL, DiBernardo considered retiring from the game and going back to Notre Dame for a master's degree. He instead decided to attend Cardinals' training camp, where he learned that Mike Morris had been signed as the St. Louis long snapper.[6]

" [The Rams] said come over to (Ram Camp at Cal State Fullerton) tomorrow. I was just saying, 'There is a God. He is listening.' This is the best thing that's ever happened to me. Friday was the greatest day ever."
DiBernardo on signing with the Rams[11]

On July 21, 1987, DiBernardo told Cardinals coach Gene Stallings he would be retiring from football, citing concerns about his job security. He showed an interest in a marketing or administration job.[6] On August 14, while he worked for a moving company, DiBernardo received a call from a marketing agency that offered a management position; he accepted.[11] Four hours later, the Los Angeles Rams offered him a tryout. DiBernardo signed with the Rams for "about minimum wage" as a reserve linebacker and long snapper.[11] He played in three games for Los Angeles, and had two fumble recoveries.[1] The Rams released DiBernardo along with nine other players in the beginning of September.[12]

Personal life[edit]

In 2008, DiBernardo worked as a mutual fund regional vice president in Orange County, CA and as a part-time college football referee.[13] He has three daughters with their mother Mollie.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Rick DiBernardo". Pro-Football-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved February 9, 2013. 
  2. ^ a b Hamilton, Tom (September 9, 1981). "Rick DiBernardo Is Edison High School's Man for All Positions". Los Angeles Times. Tribune Company.  (subscription required)
  3. ^ "DiBernardo Sets Edison Mark". Los Angeles Times. Tribune Company. January 10, 1981.  (subscription required)
  4. ^ "Chang, DiBernardo Head South". Los Angeles Times. Tribune Company. May 14, 1982.  (subscription required)
  5. ^ McManis, Sam (January 29, 1982). "Dinner Can Wait at the DiBernardos". Los Angeles Times. Tribune Company.  (subscription required)
  6. ^ a b c d e f McCurdie, Jim (August 9, 1987). "Not a Snap Decision: After One Season as an NFL Bit Player, Former Edison Star DiBernardo Had Enough of Football". Los Angeles Times. Tribune Company. 
  7. ^ DiGiovanna, Mike (February 3, 1982). "DiBernardo Chooses Notre Dame". Los Angeles Times. Tribune Company.  (subscription required)
  8. ^ Faust, Gerry; Love, Steve (2002). The Golden Dream. Sports Publishing LLC. pp. 90–91. ISBN 978-1-58261-608-7. 
  9. ^ Zier, Patrick (April 14, 1987). "Tampa Bay gets Turk from Steelers". The Ledger. Halifax Media Group. 
  10. ^ "1986 St. Louis Cardinals". Pro-Football-Reference. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved February 9, 2013. 
  11. ^ a b c Ludovise, Barbie (August 18, 1987). "Rams Sign Ex-Edison Star DiBernardo". Los Angeles Times. Tribune Company. 
  12. ^ "Transactions". Associated Press. September 2, 1987. 
  13. ^ Eichelberger, Curtis (November 25, 2008). "Football Ref Says Managing Money Prepares Him for Fans Catcalls". Bloomberg Businessweek. Bloomberg L.P.